COAMFTE Update and FAQs regarding COVID-19 and the New Standards Version 12.5

Updated: June 2021


  1. COAMFTE Standards Version 12.5 will be formally implemented on January 1, 2022.
    • Programs who have a self-study due during 2022-2024 will be required to submit under version 12.5 standards, are considered to be preparing under version 12.5, and may adopt those standards starting January 2022.
    • Programs who are submitting self-studies after 2024 and wish to transition to version12.5 can be “early adopters”.
    • Programs transitioning from version 12.0 to version 12.5 standards must completely align with version 12.5. Programs cannot choose to align with parts of multiple versions of the COAMFTE standards.

     

  2. The COVID-19 Emergency Accommodations expire on December 31, 2021.

     

  3. Programs submitting a self-study after 2024 may choose to return to the version 12.0 standards.
    • The version 12.0 standards do not allow for the use of teletherapy as part of the Foundational Clinical Practice Component. Programs maintaining the version 12.0 standards will no longer be able to allow students to count teletherapy hours to meet program clinical hour requirements after December 31, 2021, and the majority of the supervision must be conducted with the supervisor and supervisee physically in the same location.

     

  4. All programs will need to submit the Notice of Intention Survey  regarding accreditation compliance due August 15, 2021. This survey will guide programs to declare one of the following categories, based on the program’s plan starting January 1, 2022:
  1. Completely align with the version 12.5 standards as a program within the three-year self-study preparation window of 2022-2024.
  2. Become an “early adopter” of the version 12.5 standards.
  3. Return fully to pre-COVID 19 program operations under version 12.0 standards.
  4. Maintain the version 12.0 standards with modifications made to the Foundational Practice Components changing from the 500 hours to the equivalency model found in KE IV-C.
  5. Maintain the version 12.0 standards with modifications made to the curriculum delivery methods, changing from campus-based to hybrid or online delivery methods.

FAQs

 

When do the COVID-19 modifications end for students?

The COAMFTE allowance for modifications due to COVID-19 ends December 31, 2021.

Can programs continue allowing students to complete clinical hours using teletherapy under version 12.0 standards?

No, the version 12.0 standards define Clinical Contact Hours as therapist and client therapeutic meetings in the same physical location. However, the program can formally transition to version 12.5 standards.

Can programs continue to conduct more than 50% of the supervision virtually?

No, the version 12.0 standards state that the majority of the supervision must be with the supervisor and supervisee physically in the same location.

Can the students currently enrolled in programs complete the program after December 31, 2021 under the COVID-19 modifications?

No, the COAMFTE allowance for modifications due to COVID-19 ends December 31, 2021.

Under what circumstances would a program submit a Substantive Change Form?

A substantive change form must be submitted if a program is outside the three-year self-study preparation window of 2022-2024 and plans to retain modifications which use of the equivalency model for the Foundational Practice Component (KE IV-C in V12.0 standards), and/or with modifications which are related to the delivery of courses to an online and/or hybrid format. Please complete the Notice of Intention Survey for additional guidance.

Under what circumstances would a program submit a Distance Education form?

A Distance Education Form must be submitted for programs that plan to retain modifications which are related to the delivery of courses to an online and/or hybrid format. A Distance Education Form must be submitted with the self-study if a program is in the three-year self-study preparation window of 2022-2024 for version 12.5 standards. A Distance Education Form and a Substantive Change Form must be submitted in the circumstances noted in the next question below.

Under what circumstances would a program be required to submit both the Substantive Change form and the Distance Education form?

A Substantive Change form and Distance Education form must be submitted if a program is outside the three-year self-study preparation window of 2022-2024 and plans to change the delivery of courses to an online and/or hybrid format on a permanent basis.

Under what circumstances would a program submit an Early Adopter Form?

An Early Adopter Form must be submitted if the program is outside the three-year self-study preparation window of 2022-2024 and plans to completely align with the version12.5 standards as of January 2022.

Can my program formally adopt Standards Version 12.5?

Yes, starting January 1, 2022 all programs can formally adopt the version12.5 standards. Programs in the three-year self-study preparation window of 2022-2024 may align with the version 12.5 standards; others will need to submit an Early Adopter Form.

Can my program change its student handbook to align with curriculum changes for Standards Version12.5 if my program was accredited under Standards Version12.0?

The student handbook and curriculum should align with accreditation requirements. When the program has aligned with version12.5 standards, the student handbook can then be changed.

Can my program adjust its client contact requirements without submitting a substantive change form?

Complete the Notice of Intention Survey  to find out next steps for informing COAMFTE of any adjustments to client contact hours.

Can students entering in the Fall of 2021 follow the 300 hour curriculum in Version 12.5 Standards, if the program indicates it will be an “early adopter”?

If the program is an “early adopter,” then it can follow the 300 clinical contact hour curriculum in January of 2022.  During Fall of 2021, the program must align with the Version 12 Standards, which include COVID Emergency Accommodations allowing 300 clinical contact hour hours. 

So, yes, a student could enter a program with an expectation to earn 300 direct clinical contact hour hours if they enter under COVID Emergency Accommodations and then transition to the early adopter curriculum alignment in January.

Can remaining students in programs from the “COVID era” that have been working toward 300 clinical contact hours, but still have yet to complete the 300 hours by the December 2021 deadline, bridge over to the new Version 12.5 Standards 300 clinical contact hour requirement?

If the program has chosen to be an early adopter of Version 12.5, or the program’s self-study is due prior to 2024, then students can follow the 300 clinical contact hour curriculum in January 2022.

However, if the program remains under Version 12.0, COVID Emergency Accommodations end on December 31, 2021.